Do self-love affirmations work?

In this video, I’m answering the question: do self-love affirmations work?

What do you think?

Yes? No? Maybe? I don’t know?

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The short answer: it depends.

I’m going to break it down.

Words and thoughts light up and activate different areas of your brain, body, neurology, and physiology. 

They do affect your feelings.

Let’s disregard neutral feelings.

If we’re talking about more negative (discomforting) feelings, they produce a stress response in the body.

Stress, fear, anxiety hormones are going to increase. Intuition is going to decrease. Executive functioning and decision-making abilities and parts of the brain become less active. The body is preparing to fight, flight, fright, freeze, so it’s more impulsive. There’s more adrenaline coursing through the body so the body can act quickly, but not necessarily wiser.

On the other hand, positive words and thoughts can create more of a healing response in the body.

They can activate the parasympathetic nervous system which is the rest and digest system. It helps the immune system, digestion, and helps the body with the natural healing work that it will do on its own when in a state of rest. Endorphins, love hormones, intuition, will increase. Decision making improves. You’re able to make better long-term choices so that you get better overall results. 

There has been some research on the positive findings of using positive words and thoughts and how they affect the body, brain, neurology, and physiology.

We know that positive self-talk can benefit you, also your heart rate, hormones, physiology, and how you feel. 

The more you do it, the more automatic it becomes.

But there are 2 important caveats.

It can take a long time to see the results of plain and simple positive self-talk, like self-love affirmations.

Months to years to really see the results.  Ideally, your self-talk will change and improve over time as you feel better about yourself. It’s not supposed to be stagnant or stay the same. 

This is why, even though some people do find benefits with affirmation recordings, self-love affirmations, and meditations, ideally that’s not where you’re going to stay. 

It’s like a stepping stone, a little self-help tool when you’re feeling kind of down and you need some support, but can’t find that support in your personal environment, then sure use it – if it helps you feel better.

The other big if – it only works if you do it correctly. 

There is an incorrect way to use affirmations that will make you feel worse. That brings me to my next point.

Affirmations do not always work.

Sometimes they don’t.

There have been studies done that show if you try to use affirmations in such a way that you are essentially lying to yourself, you will end up feeling worse instead of better. 

I don’t know anybody who likes being lied to – even people who maybe have a habit of lying. 

Why would you want to lie to yourself if it doesn’t feel good to have someone else lie to you? 

I don’t recommend it.

Then we come back to generic affirmations you find online. Some of them are nice. I’m not trying to hate on the affirmations, but if they’re generic they will work for some people and they won’t work for others. 

Good affirmations are highly personal to you as an individual. That means they also have to change over time. 

If you’re just trying to repeat, repeat, repeat nice things to yourself, it’s not that different from positively trying to brainwash yourself. 

You’re saying these things hoping that it’s going to stick, but if it’s just repetition, if it doesn’t have meaning for you, if it doesn’t have substance, something meaty to back it up to give it some strength, then it doesn’t matter how many nice things you repeat to yourself if it crumbles under the pressure of somebody else saying mean things to you.

Finally, the other piece about affirmations not working: it can easily become almost an avoidance technique. 

You don’t want to use affirmations in place of doing the real work.

The real issue for the low self-esteem, for feeling badly about yourself, for being unkind, cruel, or mean to yourself – that’s what needs to be resolved. That’s different for everyone but that’s what will get you fast results. 

Fast results versus the slow long way.

Looking for a faster, more reliable way with substance that you can lean on under pressure?

Book a free strategy call with me. 

I’d love to chat with you more about it. 

Does Diet Affect Self-Esteem?

In this video I’m answering the question, “Does diet affect self-esteem?” Diets, exercise, long walks on the beach, bubble baths, journaling… All that stuff, as great as it can be, is not the answer for self-love (or self-esteem). It’s not the answer for feeling better about yourself. Not in the long-run. Not for most people.

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I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with those things. If you feel good doing them, if it lines up with your value system, if you benefit from it – that’s great. Keep doing it.

It’s just not the answer for everyone and why there are some people who really struggle when it comes to implementing those kinds of – it’s very typical advice to be given:

“Just take care of yourself and you’ll feel better about yourself.” 

It Doesn’t Always Work Like That

Often times it’s the opposite. 

Usually people start to feel better about themselves and then they’re able to start doing those things that help them with their mental health. Help them to feel good about who they are and what they’re doing with their life. 

If that (standard) kind of advice worked, then why is it that anybody from any type of background can struggle with self-esteem.

For example, self-esteem issues can effect people who:

  • have a lot of money
  • have experienced a lot of success in life
  • are incredibly beautiful
  • are incredibly intelligent
  • are exceptionally talented

It can effect anybody – famous people.

People who seem to have ALL those things going for them. Anybody can struggle with self-esteem.

So if walks, diets, fitness, wellness – all these things. If that’s not going to help you feel better about yourself, then what will?

Resolving The Underlying Cause Of Self-Esteem Issues

The piece that’s usually tucked away outside of our normal day-to-day awareness that we’ve become so accustomed to, that we don’t even notice it’s there anymore. 

That part that causes you to feel badly about yourself, to think badly about yourself, to question your value, to question your worth, that’s what needs to be resolved. That’s what needs to be addressed.

It’s Not Just One Thing

It’s usually a collection of different issues that have been strung together into one story or a necklace that’s all knotted up.

If you’ve been trying to do all the things to take care of yourself. Maybe even to an extreme. Maybe you’re a perfectionist who’s always trying to make yourself just right, to have it all together, and you still feel badly about yourself. You still feel like there’s something wrong with you. Or maybe you’re afraid to show people the real you, the vulnerable side of you. The part that’s not all together. 

Well it’s not because there’s something wrong with you. You’re not broken, it’s not your fault. You’re human and you just haven’t gotten to the real issues. Once you get to the real issues and you get those resolved, then the self-esteem will naturally improve on its own. 

As Self-Esteem Improves You Will Start Wanting To Take Better Care Of Yourself

How that ends up looking can be quite different from person-to-person. 

Same goes for the underlying cause. 

That’s why standard advice like, “Exercise every day and take a long walk outside and eat right” doesn’t work. There are no one size fits all plans. There are no one size fits all shirts. As much as we like to try and make them, and find ways to create those kinds of approaches, that’s not human nature. 

Once you get to the underlying causes, get those resolved, your self-esteem will improve. 

It is possible for you.

What does self-love feel like?

Hey everybody. If you’re new here, my name is Krystal. In this video we are going to talk about: What does self-love feel like?

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If you’ve never experienced self-love, it feels like a mystery.

You have no idea how to even begin to imagine what that is, what it feels like, how that affects your life, your behavior, and your relationships. It’s a complete mystery.

It’s an interesting question because it’s a little bit like saying: What does anger feel like or what does happiness feel like?

Imagine having to explain that to someone who has no concept of what anger or happiness feels like. 

If I were to describe the feeling – internally what it’s (self-love) like:

It’s being kind to yourself. Not necessarily liking everything about yourself. Not necessarily wanting to just stay the same forever. That’s a misconception about self-love, but it’s accepting yourself for who you are knowing that you’re not perfect and it’s actually a good thing that you’re not perfect. 

It feels like inner strength, stability, an ability to withstand failure. 

To look like a fool, to do something stupid, to try something new and not be good at it, and to be ok with that.

So at the very base, self-love is a feeling of just accepting who you are, where you are, right now.

If we want to talk analogies, a really good one is if you’ve ever had something sentimental. 

For example, for me, my Grandma – I have a few things from my Grandma and Mom that are really special to me – one of them being a Japanese bracelet that was hers, that her brother gave her when he was in the war. And I don’t wear it even though it’s beautiful because I don’t want to ruin it and I treasure it. It reminds me – my Grandma loved estate sales, collecting old antiques and objects, so it reminds me of her. 

So there’s an association of something valuable with that sentimental object.

When you have self-love you start to think about yourself in a similar way. 

You start to notice what’s valuable, what’s different about you. 

It’s the association of value and knowing that you’re priceless in the same way a sentimental object feels like it’s completely irreplaceable. 

There’s nothing else like it in the world.

It’s one of a kind. 

That’s self-love in a nutshell. 

What happens when you don’t value yourself? What do you do then?

If you don’t know what it’s like to have self-love these are the kinds of questions you think about. I remember being there myself too – when I didn’t know if I had value or what my value was. 

I think one of the easiest places to begin with that is to look at what makes you smile, what makes you sad, and what makes you angry.

If it brings up an emotional response in you – it’s because you care about something. 

There’s something there that maybe you don’t see inside yourself yet but there’s something there that perhaps you feel is lacking in the world around you and one of the things that have really helped me shift my perspective in this: 

If I feel it’s lacking in the world around me maybe that’s because it’s my piece. Maybe that’s the part that I’m supposed to play in this world so that the picture is complete. It’s your own personal puzzle piece. 

That’s where I would begin if you don’t know what you value or what’s valuable about you. You can build on that.

Another good analogy (for self-esteem) is like a tree in a storm.

The thing about self-love is, there’s this idea that once you have it your tank is full and you can just cruise and you never have to worry about filling up your tank again. That’s not quite true. 

You have to keep filling up your tank. 

Everybody has hard days and easy days, and everybody has good days and bad days, and the thing about self-love is it’s this constant evolution. 

You get comfortable in one arena or experience and then you start moving into other areas where you don’t have the comfort. You’re in the unknown again. You’re starting over again. 

The self-love is what gives you the inner strength and the resilience, the stability to weather the storm, to get through it.

If you’re too stiff, if you’re not flexible enough, the branch is going to break.

If you’re too flexible, the wind and the storm are going to push you over and pull your roots out of the earth. 

It’s a balancing act of flexibility with strength. The strength comes from tapping into what you cultivate inside yourself.

Another aspect of self-love that I think is really interesting you start to become more of an explorer. 

You start wanting to try new things. 

It’s not about feeling like you’re not enough so you have to fix something about yourself – it’s different. It’s more like, you’re curious and you want to find out what’s going to happen if I do X, what’s going to happen if I do Y, what’s going to happen if I do Z. 

And because you’ve built up at least some of that inner strength, you have enough courage to step out and do it and find out. 

Chances are, if you’re new at something, you’re not going to nail it the first time. You’re going to miss a few shots. That’s ok. That’s part of the learning process. That’s HOW you get good at stuff – by missing. You get good by doing the failing part and because you have the self-love, the inner strength, you can get through the failing part. 

One of the really interesting things about self-love – once you get enough of it where you have the strength, you can start taking some risks, doing some new things, having new experiences you learn more about yourself so you find out that you’re not exactly who you thought you were.

What’s really exciting about that – when you find out you aren’t who you thought you were, but you’re somebody else, now you’re not exactly the same person but your self-love has grown because you’ve learned something valuable about yourself that you didn’t know before. 

Self-love in a lot of ways is a discovery – it’s the unknown parts of yourself that you’re willing to learn about.

It’s mysterious. 

It can feel very magical at times because – not everything works out well, everybody fails, that’s part of the learning growing process, but when you do something new and it goes really well it feels amazing! 

I’ll give you an example.

I’ve been wanting to feel stronger in my body to feel more empowered because that’s something that’s always been kind of challenging for me – to feel safe in my body. 

So this last weekend one of my friends took me out shooting. 

She started me with an easy gun – I call it the baby gun, but it was a lot of fun and I surprised myself because I hit the target MOST of the time and I’m by no means, would ever have thought of myself being skilled in something like that.

(It goes without saying… please be safe and smart. Weapons can be dangerous and you should go with someone who is skilled and knowledgable so they can show you how to handle a weapon properly and safely.)

Especially because the loud sounds can be jarring. 

It was exciting. It was amazing, and those are the kinds of experiences I’m talking about. 

When you do something new you aren’t sure you’re going to be able to do, and you know you might fail, but you say, what the hey, let’s do it, let’s see what happens and then you can surprise yourself in a really wonderful way. 

Then you’ve learned something new about yourself.

Now you have something more to continue the exploration. 

To go deeper in learning about yourself. Cultivating the value. Cultivating the appreciation, but also the acceptance of, alright, so I missed a shot. No big deal. Life moves on. Just another storm. Tomorrow the weather could be great.

That’s it for now.

I’d love to hear your questions, comments below. 

See you in the next one!

I’ll be doing a weekly video for tips and answering questions on increasing self-esteem, self-love, and cultivating inner resilience. 

If you have a question about these topics, let me know! 

In these videos, I am simply sharing what I have learned through my life and experience. The information contained in these videos is in no way meant to be taken as medical advice. I do not diagnose, prescribe, or treat. Please remember, everyone has their own journey and yours may be different. If you would like assistance finding YOUR path forward, you can book a free strategy call with me